Lead Generation: Best Practices for Wellness Websites

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Is your health, fitness or wellness website an online bump on a log? These five strategies increase website lead-generation for health clubs, yoga studios, wellness centers, and corporate wellness providers.

1) Capture every site visitor’s email address

Capturing email addresses lets you determine the timing and content of future communications to your site visitors. Without it, you have no way on earth to contact them. Big mistake.

Now, there’s no magic tool that can harvest each site visitor’s email address. You have to offer something valuable – a newsletter with special offers, for example, or a white paper for corporate customers – that motivates site visitors to hand over their email address.

Put the sign-up form near the top of your website. In fact, the upper right corner is a perfect spot. Make the form prominent and eye-catching.

Do not bury it at the bottom of the page where no one will ever see it.

Should you include Twitter and Facebook links? Sure, but they’re optional. The critical information you need to get is your potential client’s email address.

2) Offer a free experience

Your goal is to get potential customers OFF the web and INTO your physical location so that they can experience what’s wonderful about your health club, wellness center or yoga studio.

Examples that have worked for our clients include:

  • a regularly scheduled weekly group fitness class that is always free
  • try-one-free coupons for yoga classes
  • invitations to free weekend presentations on topics like longevity and heart health
  • enrollment in free webinars about the cost advantages of corporate wellness

3) Profile members and clients on your website

Potential customers always want to know: what’s working for other people? How do other folks deal with problems like mine? What are other customers and members like?

The best way to answer these questions is through the (mostly) unedited words of your current customers. We give clients a guide to preparing case studies and a list of questions that elicit customers on the topics prospects care about without turning them into heavy-handed unsubtle marketing hacks.

Include candid photos of these customers whenever possible. Photos draw your site visitor’s eye to your content – and they immediately answer your potential client’s unspoken question: “Will this be a fit?”

If you’re selling to employers AND individuals, create a separate section on your website that showcases your corporate clients and services.

4) Show people your health club or wellness business

Pictures of your real business, customers and staff help people envision themselves as members or clients.

However: SKIP the usual pictures of sparkling, totally unoccupied, locker rooms, group fitness studios, and rows of gym equipment without a human being anywhere in sight.

Photos of your corporate clients’ headquarters buildings are equally unhelpful.

And there’s no excuse for stock graphics.

Instead, consider this alternative:

A photo of your cardio area, during peak hour, with a caption like this one:

“Sherry, on the right, is a mom from Parker. Looks like she’s glued to American Idol again! Dave, in the middle, comes in while his son’s getting his swim lesson downstairs. Carla, on the right, is controlling diabetes with almost no medication. Notice that even at 7 p.m. on a Monday you’ve got plenty of available ellipticals and bikes to choose from.”

That caption subtly makes key marketing points:

Who comes here? moms, dads, kids, people with health issues

Is it fun? Hey, members can work out and watch their favorite show, too.

Will it be crowded? Nope, even when we’re busy there’s elbow room.

Yes, videos are a great idea – BUT: not every site visitor has the patience to sit through them. So don’t rely exclusively on videos. Balance them with plenty of still photos and text.

Keep your videos focused (“Here’s how your first session will go”) and short – think 90 seconds, max. Caption them with the duration so visitors know it’s only 60 seconds, not five minutes.

5) Answer the most important question first

Your home page must answer your site visitor’s most crucial question within 3 seconds:

“Does this look like it might be the right place for me?”

Your job is to pick and choose the content and pictures that best answer that question.

And that means you need to be absolutely clear and realistic about your target customer.

Who does your track record say you serve best?

Is it really people trying to lose weight? Is it younger families? Is it fitness enthusiasts, or body builders, or people into self-care and health preservation? Is it people trying to control diabetes and other health issues?

Or is it that all-too-common answer? “We’re perfect for everybody!”

Without this clarity, your website is nothing more than flabby marketing gobbledygook.

And it certainly won’t do the heavy lifting of lead generation!